Man fined for explosives conduct
A MAN who blew himself up with a home-made pipe bomb has faced court to admit the foolish act.
Warran John Allston, 44, made the potentially lethal device from 150 party sparklers at a home at Helidon Spa, west of Gatton, on February 20.
Allston packed the sparkler scrapings into an aluminium pipe and wired it to a tree on the property.
He then attempted to detonate the bomb “safely” by using a wick.
But when it did not blow up, Allston walked over to his bomb and used a blow torch to heat it.
The device suddenly exploded and Allston suffered severe injuries, including open abdomen wounds.
Police and ambulance officers rushed to the property just before 7pm and took Allston to Toowoomba for emergency surgery, where pieces of the bomb were removed from his body.
Gatton Magistrates Court was told Allston spent a lengthy time in hospital and underwent numerous operations to save his life.
He declined to be interviewed by police. Under Queensland law it is illegal both to make and detonate sparkler bombs.
Allston pleaded guilty to unlawful possession of explosives and dangerous conduct with explosives. He was fined $1200 with convictions recorded.
Defence lawyer Mark Stone told the court his client had had part of his bowel removed during an operation after the incident and he had suffered infections.
The case was the third time within 12 months that a home-made bomb had caused serious injures in the region.
In May last year, two boys aged 14 and 15 were injured when a pipe bomb exploded unexpectedly at a Gatton residence, and in August a 15-year-old boy was almost killed when a bomb made from sparklers shot shrapnel into his face.